How to Fail Less at the Start

Starting anything from scratch is no easy task. The odds are stacked against you.

While starting companies, divisions, departments and even a new role will always come with a high likelihood of failure, there’s more than a few things to be said about putting yourself in the best possible position NOT to fail.

From years of failures, usually 20 or so before I hit paydirt, there is definitely a number of things that you can do to help yourself out.

Here’s 10 things to think about when it comes to failing less at the start.
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Focus on Behaviors, Not Goals, in the New Year

Put down your New Year goal sheet for a minute.

A client of mine, GradFly CEO Oscar Pedroso, shot me an interesting article yesterday about setting goals.

Forget Setting Goals. Focus on This Instead.

If you have time, take 10 minutes read it in its entirety. It’s well worth it.

Goals are good, but is there something better?

You know the traditional business speak about goals and goal setting. That goals are the basis of any plan and that without a goal, you have nothing that you are striving for.

Is that always true?
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10 Takeaways From Startup Weekend Buffalo

Last weekend was Startup Weekend Buffalo.

It was an impressive and inspiring event. Over 150 attendees formed 16 different teams.

The goal? To create a Minimum Viable Product and pitch it to judges in less than 54 hours.

Yep, that sounds about right for entrpreneurs, huh?

I was fortunate to attend as one of the mentors, an experience with such an impact I’m still thinking about.

Hence this post.
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College is an investment

Peter Thiel the “legendary” investor who brought us companies like PayPal has an interesting “thesis” on higher education; it’s in a bubble.

It’s true that college is losing relevancy in many fields and market sectors. And yes it is becoming more and more expensive to attend. Heck as someone who went to school to be a teacher (and never became one because of what I saw “in” the system), the whole education system in this country needs an overhaul. Fast.

However, education, college or otherwise, should always be thought of as an investment. An investment that includes time plus money (and interest in some cases), which needs ultimately to provide a return over time (an increased wage over what would be earned without the education). In the past college was a great investment because it gave a great return (like Microsoft when it was a growth stock).

Having a college degree all but ensured you would make X% more per year (and thus you could afford the loan repayment while still having more cash in your pocket (your return)).
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